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Larger businesses more optimistic about the future compared to smaller businesses 18 May

  • 67% of businesses with more than £5M turnover are projecting increased income.
  • 46% of businesses with less than £250k turnover are expecting reduced income over the next 12 months.

Latest research from Forrester Boyd has found that over the coming 12 months 67% of larger businesses – those with a turnover of more than £5M - are projecting increases in their income. Conversely smaller businesses with a turnover less than £250K are expecting reduced income whilst those with a turnover in excess of £1M - are also projecting increased income.

There are some notable differences in outlook by business structure, most notably for those in the charities / non-profit sector, projecting a much larger reduction in income in the coming 12-months.

The research, which was carried out across the UK in conjunction with the UK200Group, of which we are a member, revealed that smaller businesses have been hit more significantly than larger businesses. As well as income projections, smaller businesses are also less likely to be increasing their headcount than larger businesses.

The survey does reveal some more positive outlooks. Respondents were asked their top 3 priorities for their business over the next 12 months, the top 3 are:

  • Looking after existing clients
  • Finding new clients
  • Growth

When asked the same question 6 months ago, businesses were more concerned with survival than growth.

Paul Tofton, partner at Forrester Boyd, commented; “These findings, somewhat unsurprisingly, suggests that larger businesses are more insulated from the negative effects of the pandemic. Smaller firms, with less resources and less of a ‘safety net’, are feeling the effects more severely. It is encouraging to see that 64% of businesses have reviewed their cashflow – a vital step to take at all times but even more so in these turbulent times. A concern is the low number of businesses that are undertaking customer surveys. Keeping close to your customers has never been more important.”

When looking at the regional variations from the data, the Midlands and the North of the UK are reporting less reduction of headcount by some considerable margins. In both areas only 5% of respondents reported a reduction in headcount over the next 12 months whilst respondents in the South are reporting a 21% reduction.

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